Monday, June 10, 2013

Mary Jo Kopechne in East Orange

Mary Jo Kopechne was born in Pennsylvania but lived in East Orange during most of her childhood years  and attended Our Lady of the Valley High School in Orange from 1954 to 1958. Her younger cousin, Georgetta Potoski of Pennsylvania, recalled in a 2009 interview that "she spent many summers [with Mary Jo] at the Kopechne home in East Orange, N.J."

The Kopechnes had moved to East Orange in 1944 and "lived in a predominantly Irish and Italian neighborhood in a modest two-story apartment complex at 229 Shepard Avenue [SW corner of Shepard Avenue and Rhode Island Avenue]. Blessed Sacrament became their new parish and Mary Jo completed her elementary schooling there before matriculating to Our Lady of the Valley for high school in 1954."*

Above: from the 1957 Our Lady of the Valley High School yearbook; It was Miss Kopechne's junior year

Below: from the 1962 yearbook for Caldwell College, Miss Kopechne's graduation photo

*from a 2015 newspaper article

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